Getting Kids to Eat More Fruit with #ChileanEasyPeelers

Although both my children are pretty good when it comes to getting their daily dose of fruit, they can be a bit fussy about taking it to school.  They like effortless things like a pot of grapes and would rather keep things like apples and oranges for at home when I can help prepare them etc.  This is where Chilean easy peelers come in as they are so simple to peel, meaning kids can do it themselves, quickly at any time.

Packed full of vitamin C and a great source of water, Chilean easy peelers are a great way to keep hydrated during the day.  Also providing a rich source of fibre, calcium and magnesium they are a nutritious snack for both children and adults to enjoy.

We tried these at home first and both my children got stuck in peeling one each and it was completely effortless and within a few minutes they both were eating their fruit.  Having a sweet, juicy taste, the segments disappeared quickly and both of them thoroughly enjoyed their snack.  With the knowledge that they were so easy to peel they were quite happy to have them in their school lunch boxes which is great as I know they are getting another one of their five a day during school hours and also it boosts their liquid intake which is important when trying to concentrate and learn new things.

Chilean easy peelers have gone down a treat with my two and will now be something I add to the weekly shopping list rather than just an occasional fruit that I buy.  It’s great that children can peel them so easily, meaning less work for me, and a juicy treat for them!

This post is an entry for the BritMums #ChileanEasyPeelers Challenge, sponsored by Chilean Citrus Committee

Songmics Toy Storage and Bookshelves Unit

Songmics have done it again with this fabulous value for money children’s storage unit.  If you are looking for something that doesn’t cost the earth, but looks stylish and holds lots of your child’s books and boxes for toy storage then check out this multipurpose colourful unit.

The unit comes flat packed but I found it very simple to build on my own and did it fairly quickly.  It’s quite light to carry empty and does have supports to attach to the wall should you feel you want to use them.  The colourful toy storage boxes are sturdy and strong and ideal for my 6yr old’s endless little bitty toys that he loves to collect and he can remove a box when he wants and just put it back over the bars when he’s finished.

The book holder is useful and I love the way all the books face you so that the child an select a book by glancing at the front cover easily.  I try and change the books around every few weeks with others so that he constantly gets different ones to look at and choose for bedtime reading. Overall I’m thrilled with this storage idea and it has proved a hit with my boy, he loves seeing all his things and has easy access to them to play with or put back when it’s ‘tidy up’ time.

With this being such a useful, great piece, I’m giving you the chance to win one for yourself – exactly as you see in the picture below.  If you’d like to win then scroll down and fill in the gleam form to get your entries in.

Songmics toy and bookshelf storage

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

Play Fun Speedy Doc Game

Play Fun Speedy Doc is a family friendly game aimed at ages 8+ with quick paced rounds of questions where you all have to think of answers until someone duplicates or can’t think of one.  The Doc himself runs the games and controls who starts, how much time you have and how many ‘zeros’ the loser of each round should take.

The game required no setting up other than batteries being inserted and the ‘zero’ cards being pushed out of the perforated card.  I love that there is a handy storage space in the back of Speedy Doc to keep them safe and use as required during play.  There is a simple on/off switch on the back of the doc and then he is ready to go.  You don’t really need to read the instructions other than how to get him to repeat something or pause the game as he guides you through and takes control of the game.

To control Speedy Doc you press lightly on his head, so to start a game someone presses his head and then he starts the first round.  He will tell you which player should start by saying something like ‘the player with the longest hair’ and tell you whether to continue left or right.  He’ll then ask a question such as ‘name a sport you can play at school’ or ‘name countries beginning with B’ and then you go round giving your answer.  After you speak you need to press the doc’s head and then it’s the next player but beware, if you take too long to give your answer, he will time you out and that will be the end of the round.  He’ll then tell you how many ‘zeroes’ to take before proceeding with the next round.  After several rounds he’ll declare the end of the game and the person with the least zeroes is the winner!

To keep things interesting Speedy Doc with make random changes in the game such as switching the order of the players or telling the player who just got a ‘zero’ to give it to another player.  We found the game fast paced and fun, with lots of silly answers coming out as we tried to think of ideas for the answers.  You can tell the doc if someone duplicates or says a wrong answer and he’ll end that round.  Being suitable for ages 8+ is probably right as younger ones aren’t able to think of enough answers to keep up, although my almost 7yr old joined in and we let him off for some of his answers to involve him in the game.  My 9yr old enjoyed it though (well maybe not when she got a zero) but it does bring out the competitive side in people but also gets you using your brain and thinking of things to answer the question. We enjoyed it and think it’ll be a great game to bring out on Saturday nights and at Christmas when we can have lots of family fun!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

Get Kids Reading with Roald Dahl Books at McDonald’s

With Roald Dahl being a much loved children’s author and one of the world’s greatest storytellers, it is only fitting that his books are part of McDonald’s Happy Meals for the next few weeks.  This project comes as part of McDonald’s #HappyReaders initiative, which aims to increase book ownership amongst children and encourage both parents and children to find the joy in reading!

This exclusive series of books which has been available since 13th September (Roald Dahl Day) and will be inside Happy Meals for 5 weeks from then.  The series features his fantastical characters from three of his best loved stories, Matilda, The BFG and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Each book features an extract from the original story, along with Quentin Blake’s iconic illustrations, activities, stickers and a bookmark that can be popped out from the back to help kids keep their place in the book.

Featuring some of the best loved characters over the years, the titles available are:

  • Roald Dahl’s Wonderful Mr Willy Wonka
  • Roald Dahl’s Lucky Charlie Bucket
  • Roald Dahl’s Mischievous Chocolate Factory Children
  • Roald Dahl’s Amazing Matilda
  • Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Miss Honey
  • Roald Dahl’s Rotsome Giants
  • Roald Dahl’s Brave Little Sophie
  • Roald Dahl’s Fantabulous BFG

It’s really important to read with children, whether it’s you reading aloud to them, or them reading to you.  It could even be that you take turns which is what I often do with my 6yr old to maintain his enthusiasm and keep him going through the book.  It’s also a great time to bond together and you’ll find you end up talking about what’s going on, discuss pictures in the book and actually have a lot of fun

Here are 6 top tips for reading with children:

  1. Bring the story to life by using different voices for the characters. Try out a     pompous tone for Augustus, or a high, whiny voice for Veruca.
  2. Make your child the author! Stop at exciting moments in the story and ask your child to invent what happens next.
  3. Make reading with your child a special time for you both every day.
  4. Children of all ages love to hear stories read aloud.
  5. Don’t stop reading to your children just because they can read by themselves.
  6. Let your child help choose the books that you’ll read together. If your child is excited by the subject, the story will hold their interest better.

My children have really enjoyed reading these #HappyReaders books and love the little press out book mark to keep their page when putting the book down.  Being fairly small they are not daunting and encourage children to want to read them.  We share reading the stories to give them some practice but to also let them sit back and relax whilst I read.

You can see Peter Andre launching the books in the Happy Meals at McDonald’s here:

If you haven’t already, take your children to McDonald’s so they can enjoy one of these fun books to enhance and encourage their reading!

This is a sponsored post on behalf of McDonald’s.

Kingdom of You Personalised Book from Wonderbly

Kingdom of You is a wonderful personalised book for your child from Wonderbly.  Along with a range of titles such as The Little Boy who Lost his Name, there are a choice of books for your child in which their name appears throughout in an enchanting and engaging tale.

What I like about Kingdom of You and the other books available is not only is your child’s name published throughout, you have a choice of characters and various other options to tailor it to your child’s tastes and likes.

Kingdom of You is about a child who dislikes tidying his room (anyone have one of those? I know I do!) and then the laundry genie appears and grants him three wishes.  These will all be things that your child thinks are great but unfortunately having all these isn’t as good as it seems so fortunately the genie grants a fourth wish in which everything goes back to normal.

The book is well thought out and engaging with full colour pictures on each page.  My little boy loved to read the text then spend a few minutes checking out the picture and telling me what was going on and what he thought was going to happen next.

Kingdom of You from Wonderbly was a big hit with my little boy and we have read it many times over.  There’s nothing more a child loves than seeing their name in a book and putting themselves in place of the character throughout the story.  We’ve been entertained and loved reading the adventure together – a really special book for a child to treasure!

Have you checked out the personalised books at Wonderbly?  Perfect for gifts or special occasions – any child is sure to love receiving one of these!

 

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

Back to school with Vosene

Vosene is one of our favourite haircare ranges for the children with Pink Pomelo 2 in 1 being a top choice, although now we are back to school I have to think about the dreaded head lice.  Although my boy with short hair has never suffered, unfortunately my daughter has been caught a number of times, most recently just before they broke up for the Summer holidays.

Vosene kids offer a 3 in 1 Shampoo with natural lice repellents containing tea tree oil and lemon eucalyptus oils.  It has a really fresh lemon scent and easily lathers up to leave hair fresh and clean.  Having an added lice repellent is a bonus and you know your child will be less likely to catch head lice having used this shampoo as opposed to a normal shampoo.  One less product always helps as children really don’t like using multiple products on their hair.

Additionally the Conditioning Defence Spray is great to use and keeps hair soft and tangle free.  Being just a leave in spray this can be used at any time of the day and I found it good to use in the mornings when getting hair ready for school.  You then know that hair is boosted with lice repellents before the day ahead so I give the hair a good spray particularly around the ears and neckline as this is where we tend to find lice congregate!

Overall Vosene is a trusted brand that kids are happy to use and the feeling I have as a parent that hopefully my child’s hair will repel any lice that come it’s way helps me be more relaxed and in hope that we don’t have another dreaded head lice infestation any time soon!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

Back to School with BRITA Fill & Go Active Water Bottle

Brita Fill & Go Active Bottle is a durable, practical everyday bottle that filters water on the go and is perfect for adults and kids alike.  It’s a good size which is great for my children who drink a lot particularly in warm weather and ideal for them to take to school to keep them hydrated during the school day.

Holding 0.6 of a litre it’s easy to know roughly how much you are drinking in a day.  The filter is simple to use and just a small disc you insert between the screw parts at the top.  Reducing chlorine and other taste-impairing substances each disc will filter up to 150 litres of water or can be used for up to 4 weeks.  The bottle can also be used without a filter should you so wish.

The whole bottle is made from a soft plastic making it durable and child friendly – if it drops on the floor, it’s unlikely to crack and break.  With a handy carry handle and a removable lid, the children have absolutely taken to these and carried them round out and about on all our days out over the last couple of weeks.  Having different coloured handles helps them differentiate between them (lime and pink are also available).

Overall I’m highly impressed with these Brita active bottles and they are just perfect for our family and lifestyle.  They feature everything the children need and are perfect for taking to school when they return next week, just need to add their name on the bottom and they are ready to go.  I know they will be well used and help them drink plenty of water during the day.  If you are looking for a simple, unfussy design (which is what they need at school) that is durable in it’s build and also has the ability to filter water then this Brita Fill & Go active bottle is the one for you!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

The Emoji Movie Poseable Light Up Figures

The Emoji Movie Poseable Light Up Figures from Flair are just the sort of toy that Emoji Movie fans will love.  My 6yr old is emoji crazy so these are right up his street and he was thrilled at getting to try them out although a tad sad we didn’t receive Poop (I was actually quite pleased!). With three in the range, you get the choice of Gene, Jailbreak and Poop.

Surprisingly the figures are 8 inches tall, much larger than I expected and would look great on display on a bedroom shelf (the 6yr olds are currently on the mini bedside table attached to his bed as he can’t be without them – they are the ‘in thing’ for him!).  Built of plastic, they are fairly sturdy and come on a speech mark shaped base which is removable, but you do need the figure to be on it to stand them up.

The main feature with them is that if you lift their right arm, a part of them lights up.  On Gene this is his mouth and on Jailbreak it is her hair and badge on her hat.  My Mister B age 6 loves these and they make him very happy at bedtime.  Emoji themed toys seem to be the thing that kids love at the moment so I’m sure that these will prove a big hit with young fans.

Overall they aren’t so much a toy as a model that brightens up a shelf in a bedroom.  The light up feature is a little limited as you have to hold the arm to keep the light on but my little boy likes them and has fun with them each evening in the run up to bedtime.  For any Emoji fans out there I’m sure they’ll love them!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

Nickelodeon Experimake Superb Sea Shaped Soaps

Nickelodeon Experimake Superb Sea Shaped Soaps by Addo Play is a fun science based craft kit aimed at children aged 8-10 years.  Available from The Entertainer toy shop it is part of a bigger range of craft kits all containing various experiment type projects. This one consists of making sea shaped soaps using included moulds, colourings and fragrances.

When opening the box the contents are displayed in two cardboard trays covered in science images which was rather fun but also helped us keep all the bits neatly together.

Included are:

  • 3 sea related moulds
  • red and blue colouring
  • vanilla fragrance
  • 3 pipettes
  • stirring sticks
  • soap base
  • gloves
  • gift bags
  • gift labels

The children couldn’t wait to get started and set about making their own sea life soaps.  I gave them each a microwaveable plastic pot to which they added the soap base cubes.  They put these in the microwave for short bursts until the soap had melted and then loved donning a glove each to add their chosen colours.  They quickly worked out that they could mix the colours to create new ones so by adding a couple of drops of red and a couple of blue which created purple.  They also noted that the yellow vanilla fragrance added to the blue created a green colour.  They thoroughly enjoyed using the pipettes and creating their own little liquid soap ready to pour into the seashaped moulds.

The instructions also suggest additional ingredients you can add to the soaps to give different properties such as salt for exfolitating, oats for an oatmeal soap, dried flowers for a rose petal soap or herbs for an aromatic soap – all things you may already have at home and can add to make more inventive style soaps.

We popped the moulds into the fridge for half an hour to set and then we found them easy to pop out, although you do need to press evenly across the shape to ensure it comes out whole and doesn’t break.  The children were thrilled with the finished results and really proud of the soaps they made.  They can’t wait to use them at bedtime!

A really nice touch with this set are the included three little organza gift bags and sticky labels that you can use to give the soaps as gifts. This really finishes off the set and makes a lovely handmade gift for your child to give.  My two are currently decided who they are going to gift a soap too and which ones to keep for their own use.

Overall I think the Nickelodeon Experimake Superb Sea Shaped Soaps is a really lovely set for children to create with and it’s relatively simple to do.  Obviously due to the high heat of the melted soap pieces it is best placed with slightly older children but it’s great to bring the science element into play at home with liquids/solids, adding liquids with a pipette and colour mixing.  A great set that would make a lovely gift for boy or girl!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

Foraging for fruit with Robinsons Fruit Shoot

Robinsons Fruit Shoot has long been a favourite of my children’s for picnics, days out and treats so we were pleased to take Fruit Shoot up on their foraging challenge which incorporated foraging to find our own fruit and then inventing our own new Fruit Shoot flavour.

Armed with a hamper of goodies to get us going we started by looking through the ‘Food for Free’ book to get an idea of what to look for along with reading the hints and tips list created by expert Fergus Drennan to ensure we followed safety and a guide to common things that can be at this time of year.

We headed outside and the children were happy to spot some apple trees and wild blackberries.  Unfortunately most of the blackberries were yet to ripen but we did manage to get a couple which we took home to wash and eat.  I let the children enjoy them and apparently they were very juicy and delicious!  We are going to try some of the apples cooked in a tart to see what they are like but the children loved the idea that we had picked our own fruit and could actually eat it.  We also want to collect some more blackberries once they have ripened to try and make some mini ice lollies with the moulds from our hamper.

Obviously we needed some refreshment after all that foraging so Robinsons Fruit Shoot in Summer Fruits flavour proved a popular choice and was the perfect refreshment for a day outdoors.

With our foraging trip over and feeling greatly inspired by our findings it was time to head home to invent our own Fruit Shoot flavour.

The children sat quietly engrossed in their new Fruit Shoot designs, I was really impressed with their finished pictures.  The 9yr old Miss M came up with an Apple & Strawberry flavour and 6yr old Mister B fancied Blueberry & Orange.

I think they did really well and loved exploring what fruit can be found outdoors.  It just goes to show that fruit can be fun and a little imagination can go a long way.  We thoroughly enjoyed our Fruit Shoot adventure and look forward to enjoying a lot more foraging trips in the future!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.